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Why Islam Took Hold in Muhammad’s Day
Victor M. Eskew
A. We are astounded after studying Islam to think that such a religion could be established and spread throughout one-sixth of the world’s population.
B. In a book entitled, Cruel and Usual Punishment, Nonie Darwish sets for the reasons why Islam was such a successful religion.
C. The following is a brief summary of “Why Islam Took Hold in Muhammad’s Day.”
I. BACKGROUND OF THE MUSLIM PEOPLE
A. Desert dwelling places, thus the need for robes and veils.
B. No centralized government, ruled through families and clans.
C. Wealth was accumulated through spoils of other families, clans, and tribes.
D. Leaders were determined by strength and victory.
E. Women were drawn to the strong for both support and protection. Thus, marriage laws were very loose.
1. Women were subjugated.
2. Men could have many wives.
3. Women needed the protection of the stronger males of the tribe.
4. If their tribe was overtaken, they became slaves of the triumphant tribe.
II. THE SURROUNDING AREA WAS A THREAT
A. Governments to the West and North. If these expanded into Arabia, the power of the tribal leaders could be taken from them.
B. Judaism and Christianity were pressing into the Arabian Peninsula.
1. Three tribes of Jews were in the city of Medina.
2. As individuals converted to either religion, the culture of the Arabian Bedouin was adversely affected.
a. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” would stop raids.
b. One man with one woman for life would end polygamy.
III. MUHAMMAD WAS BORN AT THE RIGHT TIME AND PLACE
A. The religion of Islam preserves the Arabian culture.
1. There is no central government: rulers that can assume and maintain power are the leaders.
2. Power is the key. Military might and prowess is essential.
3. Arabic language preserved, Qur’an and vocabulary of Islam.
4. Sharia law protects many of the old cultural practices.
5. Men may have up to four wives.
B. All of this can be done through military action in the name of a supreme god named “Allah.”
C. Darwish: “With Islam replacing Judaism and Christianity, the Arabian culture and language would dominate, preventing any challenge to the supremacy of the culture of Arabia and its male warrior Bedouin” (Cruel and Usual Punishment, p. 14).
A. Muhammad is a man who developed a program whereby he could protect his native homeland and its culture.
B. Any nation that is overcome by Islam takes a step back in time.
C. Not one nation that has embraced Islam has become wealthier or better for its citizens.